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Thread: Breastfeeding one week postpartum

  1. #1

    Default Breastfeeding one week postpartum

    My daughter was born last Friday November 9th. I was kinda on the fence about breastfeeding at the time- I wanted to but I was induced early due to kidney issues. These issues may or may not send me to the hospital and or require certain procedures and medications. I will see my specialist again next week to find out. Because of all of these issues, I was afraid it would be hard to keep up with breastfeeding and I didn't want to make it challenging for my baby. In the hospital, she was taken away pretty immediately and had blood sugars tested and monitored (I also had gestational diabetes). When they brought her back several hours later, they'd already started her on formula and no one even asked if i wanted to try breastfeeding. I was overwhelmed and never said anything either. When we got home Sunday night I started having major regret about not trying to breast feed. I tried putting her at the breast twice but it ended in her screaming and me feeling horrible. Then, Tuesday at the dr we were told she had lost almost a pound since birth! They were very concerned and I didn't want to make her lose even more weight by trying breastfeeding again. Now it has been a week and I feel absolutely full of guilt and regret that I didn't try harder in the beginning. I have spoken with my pediatrician and a lactation consultant who both think it is possible for me to start now, but its not going well. I can't get baby to do anything, and I've been trying pumping but I literally get maybe 10 or 12 drops each time. Is this just hopeless or could my milk production potentially pick up again. I know I was lactating some earlier this week but now I am just barely leaking.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Breastfeeding one week postpartum

    I am sorry you were not better supported in your desire to breastfeed. this is a little complicated due to your health concers, but in general certainly it is very possible to start breastfeeding at this point. it is still very early days. but it will take effort and some patience.

    while a pound is dramatic weight loss, it is normal for the breastfed baby to lose about 7% of their birthweight in the first few days. also when a mom is making the first milk, colustrum, it is typically in small amounts.

    i hope your lc has given you a protocol. i hope you are using a hospital grade rented pump and it has been sized correctly for you. has a lactation aid been suggested? how is baby being fed? it is such early days-you might have better luck with hand expression, either instead of or as well as pumping. http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...expression.pdf

    here are tips for encouraging baby to take the breast. http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/child/back-to-breast/

    and general info when baby cannot nurse http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...ching_baby.pdf

    and pumping log http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...umpigchart.pdf

    please check out this info and let us know if any of it helps.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Breastfeeding one week postpartum

    I do have a hospital grade pump, although no one ever measured me. I have tried using it as much as possible but it is quite painful and it is very disappointing. Sometimes I only get about five drops out in a 15 minute period. Other times its a little more but still not any substantial amount. I don't know if I can continue to do it without knowing it will get better. I'm just concerned my body will not produce milk again. I'm not sure exactly how this works, but I'm not even leaking anymore.

    I am trying to bf baby but while she will occasionally suck once or twice, it has not yet worked for her. She is still being given a bottle as I don't want to risk her losing even more weight.

    I have so much regret for not trying this harder at an earlier date. I know I had more milk production earlier in the week, but now it seems to have stopped. Will it start up again if I continue or do you think it is a lost cause?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Default Re: Breastfeeding one week postpartum

    Definitely not a lost cause. Milk production is very flexible and responsive to demand. Increase demand and you will increase supply.

    Pumping should not be painful. That points to poorly fitting shields or to you using the machine on too high of a suction level. When you pump, do your nipples rub against the sides of he collection tube, or do they move freely in the tube? If the shield fit it marginally too small, lubing your nipples with a little olive oil may help. And to prevent you getting traumatized from the pump's action, try starting the machine on the lowest suction level and only gradually turning it up to the maximum effective level.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  5. #5

    Default Re: Breastfeeding one week postpartum

    I will try the olive oil. How long should I expect to have to pump before any change? I've tried as much as I can bear, but I haven't been able to get any more milk out than a few drops.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Default Re: Breastfeeding one week postpartum

    It's tough to say. When a baby is nursing, you can usually expect milk within 2-5 days after birth. But when you're subbing a pump for the baby, it may take longer because pumps are generally not as effective as babies in bringing in and maintaining milk supply. The fact that pumping hurts is not helping: if pumping hurts it implies that the pump is not giving you optimal stimulation. And obviously you're going to want to use it less!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  7. #7

    Default Re: Breastfeeding one week postpartum

    If I keep it at a lower setting it isn't painful but my nipples are a bit sore after. I'm mostly concerned about the lack of milk I produce with the pump. It's next to nothing. I can continue doing this but it just seems like it isn't going to pick up again. I know milk had started to come in about three days after her birth but I didn't do anything and it has certainly gone away as I am no longer even leaking. I'm now on day 9 postpartum.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,631

    Default Re: Breastfeeding one week postpartum

    Getting your milk to come back all devolves to this equation: supply = demand. The more often you demand milk from the breast (nursing or pumping with a good quality machine and correctly sized shields) and the more completely you empty the breast when you pump, the more supply you are going to have. I know that it is easy to say "pump more, nurse more" and very difficult to do that when also taking care of a new baby!

    Do you have any medical conditions in addition to the kidney issues and GD you mentioned above? Are you taking any medications? Birth control?
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  9. #9

    Default Re: Breastfeeding one week postpartum

    and i have the same questions as mommal.

    mothers have relactated months after birth. in fact, some mothers who have never given birth have managed to induce lactation and nurse their adopted babies! So it is very possible you can turn this around. Easy? probably not. But possible. But there is no way anyone can guarantee that if you do all this you will for sure be able to exclusively breastfeed. Just because it is likely does not mean it's a certainty.

    But the fact you are not producing much right now may not mean anything. It takes time to achieve results. How long have you been regularly pumping? Plus your pump sounds ill fitting. That is a problem that needs to be fixed. The earlier you start and the more you can both bring baby to the breast and pump, the more likely you will be able to bring yourself to the point of normal or near normal milk production. Try not to be results oriented so much this early, what is important at first is the frequency with which you are able to do both, not how much you pump or how long baby nurses.

    If it is too exhausting to do both, you can do more pumping or more nursing. You can play around with it to find the method or schedule that works best for you.

    Of course you have to feed baby while you work on bringing in enough milk production. Bottles are one method to do this. You can also try an at the breast supplementer aka lactation aid. Has this been suggested to you? would you like more info?

    if bottles are your best option, i suggest you try paced bottle feeding http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...astfedbaby.pdf

    Hosp, grade pumps are almost always better for round the clock pumping. But again, some hand expression may help. Very rarely, a mom finds that a different type pump works better for her.

    you can also try galactagogues. but they will not help unless you are stimulating your breasts and removing whatever milk is there via baby nursing and/or pumping/hand expression.

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